I’ll take a leader with a limp any day. How about you? Can there be a more effective leadership hire than someone who has been through real trials, who has been tested-perhaps bloodied and beat up a bit? We all learn through our mistakes and I’ve learned a lot through reading and talking to people but I gain wisdom when I try to apply what I learned in real life situations.

When hiring your next Executive Director or CEO, don’t just think about the skills needed going forward, or the person with a stellar record.  Think about each candidate’s experience and ask her what she learned from some of her biggest mistakes in the past. Therein lies golden knowledge that some other organization paid the cost for her to learn, so go for it.  Did you know …:

  • Babe Ruth who hit 714 home runs also had 1,330 strikeouts?
  • Hank Aaron hit 755 home runs and had 1,383 strikeouts?
Probably not.
People mainly focus on successes, but successes come through mistakes, trial and error, bad guesses. No way around it! President Teddy Roosevelt once said…”The only man who makes no mistakes is the man who never does anything.”